USAC Racing News 98-06-29

FORMULA 2000 SERIES Bottoms "Tops" In Sprint PCS G.P. On Minneapolis Streets Jonathan Bottoms of Buffalo, N.Y. captured Sunday's wild Sprint PCS Grand Prix of Minneapolis in the streets of downtown Minneapolis, Minn., leading the final 24 laps...

FORMULA 2000 SERIES Bottoms "Tops" In Sprint PCS G.P. On Minneapolis Streets

Jonathan Bottoms of Buffalo, N.Y. captured Sunday's wild Sprint PCS Grand Prix of Minneapolis in the streets of downtown Minneapolis, Minn., leading the final 24 laps of the 30-lap contest on the 1.6-mile circuit. The victory, in the Roppe/Team Great Northern Motorsports Van Diemen was his first in the series.

Bottoms averaged only 58 mph for the 48-mile distance, leading Ryan Hampton of Glendora, Ore. across the finish line by 4-1/2 seconds. Tim Duit of Edmond, Okla. took third, followed by John Miller of Edina, Minn. and Steve Rikert of Rhinebeck, N.Y.

Series point leader David Besnard of Sydney, Australia and local favorite Greg LeMond of Edina were among a number of drivers eliminated before the finish. LeMond lasted only 1 lap before mechanical problems forced him to the sidelines, while Besnard, who led the first six laps from his outside-front-row starting spot, was involved in an accident after 22 laps. Pole starter Marc Antoine Camirand also fell victim to an accident after 17 laps.

Bottoms' victory boosted him to seventh in the new series standings. Besnard continues to lead Hampton by 37 points going into the July 24-25 races at the Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.

Formula 2000 Point Standings: 1-David Besnard-227; 2-Ryan Hampton-190; 3-Robby McGehee-152; 4-Andy Lally-148; 5-Mike Johnson-115; 6-Marc Antoine Camirand-113; 7-Jonathan Bottoms-110; 8-Jon Herb-102; 9-Steve Rikert-96; 10-Bobby Oergel-90.

NATIONAL/16TH STREET/SPEEDROME MIDGET SERIES McCune, Malone & Sluss Triumph in USAC Midget Features National Series "Fireworks" at 16th Saturday; Speedrome Resumes Thursday

Jimmy McCune of Toledo, Ohio emerged the winner of Friday night's 40-lap USAC National Midget race at the Anderson (Ind.) Speedway. He led the final 18 laps after passing Dave Steele on the 23rd lap in his JS Distributing/Michner Plating/Benchmark/Haviland Brayton. The win boosted him to fourth in the series points going into this Saturday night's "Firecracker 40" at the 16th Street Speedway in Indianapolis, Ind.

Ricky Shelton continues to lead the National Midget points despite a tangle with Sarah McCune at Anderson and resulting 14th-place finish. Defending National Midget champion Jason Leffler trails him by 35 points. Leffler was the fastest qualifier and second-place finisher at Anderson after flipping during practice.

Critter Malone of Indianapolis is the 16th Street Midget point leader after his third victory of the 1998 campaign Saturday night at the 1/4-mile dirt track. He led the last seven laps of the 30-lap feature in his Red Top Equipment Rentals Chevy after passing Ed Carpenter. Michael Lang finished second and Carpenter, who led 13 laps of the race, was third. Malone's series lead over Lang now stands at 20 points.

John Sluss of Indianapolis drove his Ultra Sun/KECO Coatings/Pro-Motion Motorsports Gaerte to victory at the Indianapolis Speedrome Thursday night, his third victory of the series, to extend his point lead over Michael Lang going into this Thursday night's program at the 1/5-mile paved oval. A 50-lap feature is on tap. Lang's car developed steering trouble on the 13th lap of Thursday night's race, allowing Sluss to take the top spot, which he never relinquished. Brad Kuhn, Marc Longworth, Doug Greig and Gregg Cory trailed him to the checkered flag.

National Midget Standings: 1-Ricky Shelton-308; 2-Jason Leffler-273; 3-Jay Drake-269; 4-Jimmy McCune-240; 5-Tracy Hines-221; 6-Jerry Coons, Jr.-169; 7-Ronnie Johncox-158; 8-Dave Steele-129; 9-Travis Welpott-120; 10-Michael Lewis-110.

16th Street Midget Standings: 1-Critter Malone-156; 2-Michael Lang-136; 3-Andy Pierce-114; 4-Roy Caruthers-107; 5-Jeff Hampton-106; 6-Johnny Parsons III-98; 7-Ricky Shelton-92; 8-Jerry Coons, Jr.-84; 9-Donnie Beechler-77; 10-David Bridges-76.

Speedrome Midget Standings: 1-John Sluss-3,245; 2-Michael Lang-2,145; 3-Daryl Campbell-1,324; 4-Dean Franklin-1,125; 5-Brad Kuhn-961; 6-Gregg Cory-790; 7-John Mount-760; 8-Marc Longworth-734; 9-Ron Hamm-582; 10-Mark Dismore II-521.

WESTERN STATES SERIES Faccinto Wins Again at Kings; Harris Wins After TQs Move to Ventura

Monte Faccinto of Hanford, Calif. scored yet another home-town triumph Saturday night, winning the 30-lap USAC Western States/"Regional Rebel" Sprint Car race at the Kings Speedway. Alex Harris of Simi Valley, Calif. returned to the winner's circle Saturday night, winning the USAC TQ Midget race at the Ventura (Calif.) Raceway. The TQs were originally scheduled to compete at Hanford but the event was switched early in the week.

Faccinto led the final 20 laps of the Sprint car race to extend his lead in the "Regional Rebel" standings and take over third in the "Western States" Sprint Car points. Bryan Bullard of Sloughouse, Calif. led the first nine laps before he slid off the track on the backstretch. When he came back on track, he clipped Davey Pombo's car and went into a series of flips. He was transported to Valley Medical Center where he was treated for minor injuries and released.

Trailing Faccinto at the checkered flag were Bobby McMahan, Rick Williams, Pombo and Lawrence Edlund. The "Regional Rebels" resume action July 17 at Hanford, while the "Western States" Sprint cars are now idle until a July 25 race at Carson City, Nev.

Alex Harris, whose five-race USAC TQ Midget winning streak was snapped June 20 at Bakersfield Speedway, came back to win Saturday night's 20-lapper at Ventura Raceway. He led all but the opening lap of the race, driving the Honda-powered machine owned by Steve Lambert in place of his own car, which lost an engine at Bakersfield.

Gene Godepski, Ron Wade (who halted his streak at Bakersfield), Jeff Heaton and Joe Finger rounded out the "top-five" at Ventura. The TQs now prepare for a July 11 race at Perris Auto Speedway in Lake Perris, Calif.

Western States Midget Standings: 1-Rick Hendrix-291; 2-Wally Pankratz-255; 3-Bryan Stanfill-251; 4-Bobby Boone-209; 5-Shane Scully-200; 6-Steve Paden-166; 7-Dwayne Marcum-164; 8-Clay Klepper-161; 8-Sleepy Tripp-154; 10-Nick Mitchell-144.

Western States Sprint Standings: 1-Jeff Gardner-361; 2-Rick Williams-300; 3-Monte Faccinto-177; 4-Tyler Haylett-168; 5-Kirk Wartman-151; 6-Davey Pombo-148; 7-Tony Hunt-141; 8-Dave Fitzgerald-118; 9-Ray Evans-110; 10-Kevin Urton-105.

TQ Midget Standings: 1-Alex Harris-219; 2-Randi Pankratz-140; 3-Paul Krueger-131; 4-Josh Lakatos-122; 5-West Evans-120; 6-Gene Godepski-116; 7-Ron Ahrendt-111; 8-Brian Harris-100; 9-Steve Parke-94; 10-Joe Bishop-93.

Regional Rebel Sprint Standings: 1-Monte Faccinto-452; 2-Davey Pombo-431; 3-Mark Barroso-308; 4-Lawrence Edlund-298; 5-Craig Stidham-247; 6-Jeff Gardner-182; 7-Larry Brown-175; 8-Shane Travioli-149; 9-Rick Williams-144; 10-Tyler Haylett-139.

RUSSELL RACING SERIES Hill Takes Sears Point "Triple Crown" Opener; August 1 Venue Switch

Stephen Hill, of Los Gatos, Calif. captured Saturday afternoon's opening round of the 1998 USAC Russell Racing "Triple Crown" Championship at Sears Point Raceway in Sonoma, Calif.

Hill passed Swede Niklas Loven on the 15th lap and led the rest of the 30-minute contest which concluded after 23 laps around the 2.52-mile circuit. Loven, who led the first 14 laps, finished second ahead of lady driver Sara Senske, Todd Oppenheimer and Formula Russell Championship point leader Tyler McQuarrie.

Hill's victory gives him the early lead in the "Triple Crown" which now heads for an August 1 race at Thunderhill Park in Willows, Calif., a venue change from the originally-announced Willow Springs Motorsports Park in Rosamond, Calif. The series concludes October 11 at Sears Point.

Senske, of Kennewick, Wash. posted the fastest lap of Saturday's race, at over 90 mph!

Russell "Triple Crown" Point Standings: 1-Stephen Hill-20; 2-Niklas Loven-15; 3-Sara Senske-12; 4-Todd Oppenheimer-10; 5-Tyler McQuarrie-8; 6-Peter Ponder Pistor-6; 7-Max Toy-4; 8-David Farley-3; 9-Chris Pettet-2; 10-Sal Lombardo-1.

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Series USAC
Drivers Steve Park , Jason Leffler , Robby McGehee , Jon Herb , Donnie Beechler , Mark Barr , Andy Lally , David Besnard , Brad Kuhn , Tracy Hines , Dave Steele , Ronnie Johncox , Ryan Hampton , Mike Johnson , David Bridges , Jimmy McCune , Johnny Parsons , Tyler McQuarrie , Jerry Coons , Wally Pankratz , Sarah McCune , Dean Franklin , Clay Klepper , Josh Lakatos , Rick Williams , Randi Pankratz , Bryan Stanfill , Tony Hunt , Rick Hendrix , Ed Carpenter , Bobby McMahan , Ricky Shelton
Teams Williams